A defiant Martha Stewart was sentenced today to five months in prison for lying to investigators about a 2001 stock sale. The Washington Post said she called her crime as “a small personal matter that has been blown out of all proportion” and told supporters, “I’ll be back.” On the courthouse steps after her sentencing, Stewart said, “I’m not afraid.” Stewart, 62, who turned a small catering business and a passion for homemaking into a multimedia empire, was sentenced to five months of home confinement and two years of supervision, in addition to the five months in prison. She was ordered to pay $30,400 in fines and court costs.
“Lying to government agents during the course of an investigation is a very serious matter, regardless of the outcome” of the probe, U.S. District Judge Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum said. Cedarbaum said she gave Stewart the minimum under sentencing guidelines because Stewart had no prior criminal record and had done a lot of good. In addition, Cedarbaum said, “I believe you have suffered, and will suffer, enough.” Stewart will remain free during her appeal, which could take a year or more.